Kunle Afolayan’s “October 1” and Theodros Teshome Kebede’s “Triangle Going to America” received multiple nominations on Saturday as the Africa Movie Academy Awards (AMAA) confirmed what’s been whispered for months: Those are the cinematic treasures coming out of the continent.
Both “October 1” and “Triangle Going to America” took nominations for best director and best picture and each garnered eight nominations scoring heavily in the major categories.
(L-r) Ayuko Babu, Miki Goral, Ja’net Dubois, Sheryl Lee Ralph and President of the African Film Academy, Peace Anyiam-Osigwe
A previous winner, host and nominee at the AMAAs, Jimmy Jean-Louis’ latest project, a documentary on Nollywood titled “Jimmy Goes to Nollywood” received a best diaspora documentary nomination, while the British film “Gone Too Far” earned two nods, one in the category for best film by an African living abroad and another for the film’s director Destiny Ekaragha.
“Timbuktu,” a previous Oscar nominee for best foreign language film that is based on the militant takeover of the ancient city in Mali in 2012, was also a major nominee at this annual award show, which is regarded as the most prestigious film awards for African filmmakers.
Over 800 films were submitted this year for consideration from Kenya, Nigeria, Togo, Sierra Leone, Burkina Faso, Namibia, Ghana, Egypt, South Africa and Sudan.
For Afolayan, who was certainly elated as the announcements were made, it’s a further indication his psychological thriller ‘October 1’ is more than just a notable film.
“The AMAAs is such a competitive award because of the caliber of films from different parts of Africa,” Afolayan told Trendy Africa’s Samantha Ofole-Prince. “I have seen quite a number of the films that were announced and they are great films from different parts of the world. Being nominated is as good as winning.”
Talk show host and radio personality Rolonda Watts, who hosts the entertaining weekly podcast “Sundays with Rolonda” hosted the event which was held at the House of Music & Entertainment in Beverly Hills, CA.
Attendees included Louis Gossett Jr., director Eric Seaton (“Legend of the Mantamaji”), actor OC Ukeje (“Gone Too Far”), renowned actresses Sherly Lee Ralph and Ja’net Dubois. There were also several performances by singer-songwriter Chrisette Michele.
Now in its 11th year, the Africa Movie Academy Awards is set to reveal the winners for each category in September. No hosts were announced at press time but the theme will be ‘The Stories never End’.
Samantha Ofole-Prince is an entertainment industry specialist and contributes to Trendy Africa Magazine from Los Angeles.